Letter from the Mayor

Hi All,

As many of you know my mother is very ill following two major surgeries in the last two weeks (She’ll be 95 in January and currently has double pneumonia). While I was holding her hand this morning discussing family and updating her with recent news including Village affairs, she wanted me to promise her I would not run for mayor. My sister arrived and my son Cole drove me home where I am writing this now.

As I mentioned to Betsy Morgan the other day, following an email to me where she declared she would run for mayor, I told her as I am telling you now I need to put family first and wished her and the trustees success. I also added I do not want a contentious election for the Village as it is very harmful for such a small municipality so vital to the Town of Shelter Island. (If you do not know why the Village is important to the Town, I will be glad to explain over a glass of iced tea or lemonade as I may relish a pint of Guinness but once a year.)

In the spirit of transition, below is a list of the major issues faced by the Village for all to read although all of these with the exception of the attached resignation letter appeared on one or more prior agenda.

(1) An application for new well funding before Mark Mobius’ committee. A trustee should revise the application to fit the new criteria outlined by Jim Eklund, enclosed. I submitted the application in November 2017 after drafting one based on Fred Thiele’s legislation carving out the language we need for a successful application. As trustee Benacerraf has been helpful in our work to resolve the litigation, I ask him to help finalize the application.

(2) John Collins’s (H2M) proposal to bring an existing third well into DEC compliance. Problem with this is the proposed new lines would need to be placed following the construction of the new tank. The trustees should review the proposal at the next meeting if they did not have a chance at the last one.

(3) Hap submitted his resignation letter today effective 15 June 2018 (attached). I asked Joe Pokorny of SCWA to send an engineer to repair Well #1 and get it into production. (I copied Betsy Morgan on my initial request last Saturday before I received Hap’s resignation letter.) Perhaps trustee Parcells and trustee Benacerraf can help Joe Pokorny fix Well #1 managing the process to help the Village? We would all be indebted to them if they can help.

(4) The trustee requested State audit will occupy Lisa’s time to prepare supporting schedules for FY 2018. The scope of the State audit starts June 1, 2017 through the current period and does not look at prior periods. The Village auditors, Nawrocki/Smith will also help to provide supporting documentation as appropriate and at a cost as yet to be determined. I am sure trustee Kelsey would be delighted to assist Lisa as Karen holds a firm grasp of the Village’s financial and reporting system.

(5) The new tank is scheduled for excavation starting the last week in May followed by the delivery of the tank itself June 11. I ask trustee Parcells to continue his management of the installation process and parallel conversion from the old system to the new one as this process will start after my term ends 30 June. Patrick has been proactive in helping John Collins and me prepare the site location of the new tank. Patrick can confirm the start dates.

(6) The residents will need to review the discounted cash flow analysis trustee Parcells is preparing to compare the efficacy of the Village’s water system managed by the SCWA versus the Village’s own cost to operate the system. The Village can receive grants and subsidized capital improvement loans while the SCWA cannot. The residents should look forward to review the net present valuations of the two proposals while we gather the opinion of the greater Town of Shelter Island. In any case, the Village needs to continue the work to put a third well in production.

(7) Deputy mayor Morgan should meet with Kristin Kraseski (NYS DEC) on 23 May at 11 AM in the Shelter Island Town Hall board room along with Town representatives to help remove Dering Harbor from the MS4 designation of “impaired water body.” This meeting is imperative for the Village and the Town as the MS4 designation affects all of us. The Town and the Village need to act as one to resolve this open issue.

(8) While at the DEC meeting, deputy mayor Morgan should ask Kristin the steps needed to authorize DEC approval of the funding ($130k) allocated by The East End Economic and Environmental Institute for the acquisition of a pump-out boat based on Shelter Island. Betsy can work with Supervisor Gerth, Jay Card, and Supervisor Schneiderman to secure this opportunity for everyone. It wasn’t easy getting this funding and we should appreciate our contribution to cleaning up our waterways for us and our children. I applaud Betsy for taking this on.

(9) The planning board chair, Kirk Ressler, needs Village counsel’s (Wayne Bruyn) help to refine our existing curb-cut application as well as the steps needed to plan a proposed lot-line change (subdivision) or variance request for 27 Shore Road. Wayne has received several emails from me and Chairman Ressler about these applications. I’ll send another request, but the board needs to keep on top of this as we may hold up resident applications and work schedules.

I am always available to answer any questions and do what I can to help the Village and its residents. I appreciate everyone’s help and written words of support by residents and trustees as we all work together.

My sister just called requesting my return to Peconic Landing to be with our mother.



John T. Colby Jr.
Village of Dering Harbor